Tag Archives: jsr170

Programming booleans

When looking at other programmer’s code I’m sometimes surprised with things like this:

exportDocumentView(java.lang.String absPath, java.io.OutputStream out,
boolean skipBinary, boolean noRecurse)

And in such prominent frameworks as Java Content Repository as well.

What’s my problem then? Double negations. In order to do exportDocumentView and get binary data and recursive export you’ll need to do:

exportDocumentView(“/path/to/my/Node/”, System.out, false, false)

Sure I can handle it… but… false to opt something in? I find it rather fishy. Call me an idiot but my brain just don’t deal with that kind of stuff easily…

What I would have wanted instead was:

exportDocumentView(java.lang.String absPath, java.io.OutputStream out,
boolean includeBinary, boolean recursive)

Which would have been called like:

exportDocumentView(“/path/to/my/Node/”, System.out, true, true)

For when we want binary data and recursive export, and like this for the case when we don’t want either or both:

exportDocumentView(“/path/to/my/Node/”, System.out, false, true)
exportDocumentView(“/path/to/my/Node/”, System.out, true, false)
exportDocumentView(“/path/to/my/Node/”, System.out, false, false)

I’m just saying. In my world false means “no” and “no” means don’t give me something or don’t do something:

“Don’t return binary data.”
“Don’t recurse the tree of nodes.”

To be compared with:

“Don’t skip binary data.”
“Don’t do no recursing.”

(But you’re free to curse? :o)